Your View: Viewers Upset with Phrase "Frozen Man"

5 years 5 months 4 days ago Tuesday, February 12 2013 Feb 12, 2013 Tuesday, February 12, 2013 7:45:00 PM CST February 12, 2013 in Your View
By: Katie Brennan and Kelly Carlson
loading

COLUMBIA - In our coverage of a man's body found on a farm in Moberly last month, we posted a headline to KOMU.com that some viewers found insensitive. In this week's Your View, we take a look at whether our choice of words was acceptable.

The Moberly Police Department said the body, which a farmer found while he was fertilizing the land, had been exposed to the elements and was found frozen.

The headline of our story on KOMU.com, "Frozen Man Found in Moberly; Autopsy Scheduled for Friday" upset some viewers.

A family member of the man called KOMU and left a voice message. She said, "I am calling about the news headline regarding the frozen man... I am very, very disappointed in it. The family didn't know at that point in time that he was frozen. I think it could have been worded different. I think it was a cold and callous and noncaring thing to do."

KOMU has a policy not to use the name of a victim until the next of kin is notified, but News Director Stacey Woelfel says station policy treats the cause of death differently.

"That is typically one of the facts of the story. If you are going to report the story you say someone died of in a car accident, you say someone was murdered, someone died of whatever cause, we are going to end up putting that in the story. It's part of what makes it news," said Woelfel.

Charles Davis, a journalism professor at MU, says the phrase "frozen man" is not ethically incorrect to use, but this can serve as a teachable moment.

"I think you could get with, certainly, the writer of the headline and say 'is there a way that we could have portrayed a deceased member of our community in a way other than "frozen man"?' which is factual, it's true, it's defensible. But there are probably better ways to do it," said Davis.

So what do you think? Should we have used the phrase "frozen man"? Or should we have left the condition of the body out of the story? Let us know on facebook, twitter, or google plus.  Then watch friday nights at 6 as we report your view of the news.

 

 

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley has charged a former Greenville city clerk with stealing more than... More >>
1 hour ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 3:07:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — State conservation officials say six black bears have died after being hit by vehicles in Missouri... More >>
1 hour ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 3:02:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
ALBANY (AP) — Prosecutors say a northern Missouri man and woman subjected an 11-year-old girl to nearly a year of... More >>
1 hour ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 2:54:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
POPLAR BLUFF (AP) — A police detective and an official with the U.S. Marshals Service are recovering after being shot... More >>
2 hours ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 2:39:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A southern Missouri sheriff and a subordinate have been indicted on multiple felonies following a... More >>
2 hours ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 2:33:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
MANSFIELD (AP) — The Missouri State Highway Patrol says a Florida man suspected of shooting a trooper is hospitalized in... More >>
2 hours ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 2:19:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Three carnival workers have been arrested in the deaths of two vendors who disappeared from... More >>
2 hours ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 2:16:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - A new study released Wednesday by Climate Central found conservation farming practices can help promote healthier soil and... More >>
3 hours ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 1:09:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The United States Air Force (USAF) Band of Mid-America is partnering with Columbia Parks and Recreation to present... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 10:00:00 AM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
(CNN Money) -- Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg tried to clarify his controversial comments about Holocaust deniers Wednesday afternoon, hours after... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 8:33:00 AM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – Four National Handball Champions are coming to Columbia Saturday. Wilson’s Fitness on Forum Boulevard is hosting its... More >>
9 hours ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 7:35:00 AM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
MARIES COUNTY - At the City of Belle Fair, officers arrested a sex offender carrying a stun-gun Wednesday night. ... More >>
11 hours ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 4:47:00 AM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A man who was shot to death on Sunday after shooting three Kansas City police officers... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:33:33 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
MANSFIELD (AP) — The Missouri State Highway Patrol says a trooper who was shot in southwest Missouri has been released... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:28:02 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Run-down buildings, scuffed up sidewalks and empty lots are what people first see when they exit off I-70... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:23:00 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The white former interim police chief of St. Louis is alleging discrimination based on race in... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:20:28 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Japanese beetles are swarming mid-Missouri in the tens of thousands, wreaking havoc on gardens, crops and trees. ... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:18:00 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — Donald Trump will visit Missouri next week to deliver his first address as president to the annual... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:13:07 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 80°
5pm 90°
6pm 87°
7pm 83°
8pm 80°